Taking Care Of Your Dog For a Long Happy Life

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So you adopted a pet from a shelter — congratulations! Pets are a great bond with the family, often becoming members of the family rather than just thought about as “pets.” In addition to bringing laughs and love to your family, pets, especially dogs, have some additional sneaky benefits.

For one, dogs are known to bring people together. Whether it’s at dog parks or on the street, a friendly dog is an attractive sight that makes other dog lovers want to meet the dog. In fact, studies show that dog owners are more social than non-dog owners, bringing people together, forming social bonds, friendships, and personal support for individuals.

With these benefits, it’s no wonder that people are adopting dogs and puppies all the time. These friends and companions are life-long commitments that need training, nutrition, exercise, and routine medical visits to live their best lives. There are four pillars of raising a happy pet companion, and those are:

  • Training
  • Nutrition
  • Exercise
  • Regular Veterinarian Visits

Taking these four pillars together and how they combine for optimal wellness is taking a holistic approach to your pet’s life and happiness. Let’s now explore each of these pillars in greater detail.

Taking Care Of Dog

Proper Training

Training your dog for proper behaviors will make for a happy dog and a happy home. Teaching your dog commands creates a hierarchy for your dog and is a practice to keep them safe. Training ideally begins at the puppy stage, but with proper positive reinforcement, even an old dog may learn new tricks.

Teaching your dog expectations for being in your home, outside or on a leash, in the dog park, and out in public are all vital to your dog’s understanding of their role in your life. Another benefit of training is that it sets boundaries for your dog to understand and reinforces the hierarchy you’ve worked hard to establish.

Good Nutrition

Providing the correct type of food for your dog is just as important as testing the right kind of food for you and your family. Dogs need a diet protein-rich and finding a meal plan that provides the essential macronutrients is critical. But what exactly is a macronutrient, you may ask?

Macronutrients are the sources of energy, vitamins, and essential minerals needed for optimal health. Understanding your dog’s food is critical in finding the right meal plan. In general, a food label places the ingredients in order of weight and priority in the final recipe.

Most meal plans have a variety of fillers and additives, so look for a recipe that states the ingredients. You’ll want to be sure to avoid unnecessary terms such as “meat meal.” (What is meat meal, anyway? Yuck.) And of course, verify it includes a protein source first, before any other elements.

Routine Exercise

Dogs need a vigorous daily activity that should be 30-60 minutes in duration. Regular exercise helps with digestion, regulating sleep, maintaining skeletal-muscle growth, engaging curiosity, easing anxieties, and improving moods.

The saying, “a tired dog is a happy dog,” is a byproduct of a dog that gets enough daily activity to be calm and more accepting of training and other positive behaviors. An added benefit is that regular exercise allows you to reinforce the bonds between you and continue teaching and developing positive behaviors.

Regular Veterinarian Visits

The final piece of the health puzzle is to provide routine medical evaluations for your dog. At each stage of your dog’s life, it has different needs. Vigorous play daily and regular veterinary visits can help diagnose any underlying health concerns and help maintain optimal health.

As your dog ages, those health concerns become more serious, and a vet can evaluate for physical and cognitive decline. In such a case, medications such as resveratrol for dogs may be prescribed. Still, those prescriptions and decisions are more complicated if your vet is unfamiliar with your dog’s health history.

A Better Life For Fido

Congratulations on your new addition to the family. Pets and dogs, in particular, can bring so much happiness and joy into our lives that we’ll wonder how we got along without them. But being a pet parent requires more than just a safe home.

Being a good pet parent involves a pattern of providing for their optimal health for as long as they’re part of your lives. Taking a holistic approach to your dog’s health includes balancing their nutritional needs with exercise requirements, taking the time to train them on the proper behaviors, and regular health check-ups so that you both will have the best years ahead of you.

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